Once again, Facebook has changed. This is a 5 minute video highlighting the changes to personal timelines. I’d assume Facebook will make similar changes to business pages over the next few months, but nothing has been confirmed as of now. Watch this video to get the most out of your personal profile on Facebook.
As a retailer, holidays are some of the most profitable times. As a marketer, one of these easiest ways to create a successful campaign is to learn from someone who has already created one. And, as an independent retailer, you often don’t have the time or resources to create an effective campaign. That’s why I wanted to highlight a Valentine’s Day campaign that I personally thought was smart.
Even though this campaign was done by a big brand, independents can easily implement a campaign like this. The hardest part is planning – thinking ahead and getting something on the calendar. So, read this post and take 20 minutes to strategize what you’ll be promoting this lovely holiday. Then, put it on the calendar! Tell your staff, tell your networks, start promoting and share the love. And, don’t forget to incorporate ALL of your marketing channels – email, in-store, social media (Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, blog), mobile (Instagram, texting), eCommerce/website, print, etc.
Luxury brand Michael Kors wanted to spark a dialogue with consumers about what they are falling in love with last Valentine’s Day, whether it is with people, places or apparel, on its social media networks and through email and mobile marketing. Their #FallingInLoveWith hashtag tapped into passion and emotive marketing while simultaneously advertising products. This is a great example of strengthening the relationship between you and your customer, and connecting on a deeper level.
Another main component of the campaign was the ‘10 Things Worth Falling in Love With’ emails, which were sent over the course of two weeks leading up to Valentine’s Day. The products and ideas featured in their emails were also displayed on their branded Instagram account. This is a great example of incorporating email with mobile and social media. Facebook posts and blog posts were also thrown into the marketing mix, with in-store displays helping to tie all the channels together.
Within just 24 hours conversions were pouring out on Twitter and Facebook. Today, their Pinterest board has more than 58,000 followers and they received a lot of media attention for such a simple and smart campaign.
Why I love this campaign:
It was fun.
It was easy.
It connected to customers in a personal way.
It gave permission to market to their audiences more frequently.
It incorporated several channels, creating a well rounded and more effective campaign.
Too often I see retailers promote, promote, promote. And I get it; you’re in the business of selling products which need to be promoted. But there’s other ways to do so, like the Michael Kors campaign, which is less all about you, the retailer, and more about your customers.
This season ask what your customers want this Valentine’s Day. Ask what they love. And don’t single out the single, as they can be a fantastic audience to show your love to this February by giving a special discount or gift. “Let us be your Valentine this year”, or “We have a gift for YOU, because you are who we love” messaging to make them feel special.
What are you promoting this Valentine’s Day? Do you host a special in-store event? Please share on the Crystal Media Facebook page – http://facebook.com/crystalmediamarketing
2012 saw tremendous social media growth with rapid interest in Pinterest and Facebook exceeding one billion users. 2013 is expected to be another year full of technology innovations and social media growth. Here’s what’s trending for the upcoming year:
- Loyalty Programs
- Digital Wallets
- Mobile Marketing
- eCommerce Sites
- Social Shopping
Old Dogs Learn New Tricks. Retailers have been using loyalty programs for decades to retain customers. Deloitte Retail Survey found that retailers with a loyalty program are 88% more profitable than their competitors that don’t have one. However, for 2013 we’ll see loyalty programs turn digital, running off of iPads and smartphones. The digital element allows for a more automated, fun and game like experience.
LoyalBlocks, a loyalty mobile application makes it incredibly easy for shoppers to get rewarded. All they have to do is add the app to their smartphone and walk in to the retail store. Once inside, customers can open the app and either receives tokens, a punch on their digital “card” or an in-store message like “Receive 10% off today!”
Leave your wallet at home. Loyalty programs are going digital and so are your wallets. Cashless consumption is already happening in places like Starbucks and Best Buy, but technology companies like Google and Apple are developing apps and programs that enable customers to make purchases with their smartphones, creating a “Digital Wallet” that can be used at local retail locations.
All a consumer has to do is sync an app with their credit card and scan a code at the register. With LevelUp, Merchants can accept mobile payments and not be charged a fee, so if you sell something for $40, you’ll receive $40. With predictions of smartphone adoption to continue to grow and account for around 90% of all mobile phones in 2013, we’ll see more retailers integrate with this technology. (Note: with the growth of digital wallets will also increase the concern of privacy and security. When implementing this type of technology, ensure you’re using a secure application.)
So text me, maybe? Email inboxes are filling up fast and getting email acted on let alone opened is always a challenge for marketers. With text or SMS (short message service) marketing, consumers can get offers and sales delivered directly to their cell phones. For retailers, using SMS to market can be a great way to get exclusive event information or time sensitive coupon codes out quickly for customers to easily access and act on.
Tatango is an easy to use service for merchants to integrate texting into their stores. When using SMS marketing, be sure to be selective with what messages you send out and the frequency. Using email marketing is still a great way to connect with customers, and can be a compliment to your text offers. In fact, I suggest using email to promote your text message offers and encourage customers to opt in.
2013 will also include other fashions of mobile marketing like mobile ads on top of mobile sites and MMS (multimedia messaging service) marketing including picture and video messages.
Very Pinteresting. Pinterest impacted online retailer sales in 2012, referring more traffic than Twitter and more revenue per click than Facebook, this social platform proved imagery sells and consumers shop online. From these results, more retailers are opening online stores or giving customers the ability to buy products from their Facebook page. U.S. social commerce (sales of physical goods through online social networks) is projected to grow by 93% per year from 2011-2015, and predicted to be $5 billion in 2013. Ecwid.com is a good solution for selling products on a Facebook business page.
With sites like Shopify and Big Commerce, retailers can create an online store without needing a developer or graphic designer, helping them stay competitive and giving them an additional sales outlet. Mobile shopping is also on the rise, predicted to be $14 billion in 2013, up $4 billion for 2012.
Social shopping is a method of eCommerce where shoppers’ friends become involved in the shopping experience. This is achieved through group buying sites like Groupon or LivingSocial, product recommendations whether left on the merchant’s website or discussed on social networks, and forums that create communities of shoppers to discuss, share and shop. As eCommerce spending grows, social integration is critical to stay competitive.
2013 will show more eRetailers featuring the ‘Pin It’, ‘Share It’ ‘Like It’ button next to every product and will include product recommendations, ratings and community forums. In 2013 we might also see a “Want” button on Facebook for brand pages. (Facebook is currently testing this feature and has not stated if or when it will be live to any or all brand pages.)
Also expect: gift giving on Facebook, more rewards for social sharing, social search, paid content placement on Facebook versus ads, increase in video marketing, mobile POS systems like Squareup.com and an increase in SoLoMo (customers using location-based mobile applications to share local business’s sales, products, events to their online networks like Facebook and Twitter).
To create a video like this, check out Animoto.com. They have free and a paid subscription option. Paid is only $5/month or $30/year.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic License.
Social media sites and platforms change almost daily. Below are some major changes and/or updates we saw in 2012 from the top social media sites, as they relate to you, the retailer. Please let me know if you have any questions – enjoy!
Google+ Places Becomes Google+ Local
In May, Google+ decided to get rid of Google Places and put all of its energy into Google+ Local. By searching for a place or store in Google+ Local, the contact information, reviews, and photos of that place appear in the search engine results page. Google+ Local is also now integrated when someone searches for places on Google Maps.
As a retailer, you absolutely should fully fill out your Google+ Local page, especially since these pages are integrated with Google Maps. This is a great opportunity for you to gain exposure, polish your web presence on Google and hopefully generate new business.
Pinterest Business Accounts for Brands
In mid-November, Pinterest finally answered every marketer’s prayers and announced business accounts for brands. And the process of setting them up is pretty simple.
Even though you may not have heard about Pinterest until recently, it has actually been around for a while, and totally blew up as a marketing mechanism in 2012. This shift to creating dedicated business accounts is an encouraging sign of things to come from Pinterest – maybe features like analytics might be a hot new addition to the already awesome platform.
Mobile-Only Facebook Ads
In June, Facebook launched an important feature for marketers who use sponsored ads. For the first time, they allowed marketers to pay for ads only in the Facebook mobile app, as opposed to the mobile app and desktop app combined.
Now that these options are separate, marketers can target their mobile audience differently than those accessing pages on their desktop. They can also see which platform performs better to understand where their advertising dollars should be going.
9 More Facebook Ads Targeting Options
In August, Facebook announced that they were going to allow advertisers to target their audience based on more criteria than before, including age, gender, gender the user’s interested in, relationship status, education, college grad (college name, major), in college (college name, major, years), in high school, and workplace … all in addition to the options already available including language and location.
Before this update, everything that a Facebook page updated would appear in a user’s newsfeed just because of their language and location, even if it didn’t really relate to them. Thankfully, with more nitty-gritty targeting options, social media marketers can target parts of their audiences with more personalized content.
Promoted Updates on Foursquare
In July, Foursquare announced Promoted Updates. Before, companies could only reach users who had already checked into their business. But with the launch of Promoted Updates, companies had the ability to appear in people’s “Explore” tab even if they had not been to the store before. They could promote a special, share photos, or share another message encouraging users to come to their place.
This new feature has helped marketers extend their reach and appear in anyone’s feed, even if they have never been in contact with the business before. For example, if you’re a small coffee shop, your name may not be known by many people, especially in areas dominated by Starbucks or Dunkin’ Donuts. But if you have a promoted post in Foursquare, you have the opportunity to reach a completely new audience.
Twitter Cover Photos
In September, Twitter announced a change to the layout of its profile pages. Similar to Facebook, Twitter now has cover photos on a user or company’s profile page.
Marketers now have more real estate to promote their company and give followers a better feel of what the company is all about. Followers’ eyes will immediately go toward the larger image that also promotes the username, location, and bio, which was far less visible with the old layout.
New LinkedIn Company Pages
In September, LinkedIn announced a new design for their company pages. Before, all of the LinkedIn pages basically looked the same, with the exception of the unique logo and company information blurb. However, the new pages display Company Updates and Products & Services more prominently, provide space for a cover photo, a different layout for Jobs, and the option to better target your company updates to certain segments of your audience.
For retailers, you might not get a lot of business from a Linked In page since it’s primarily a B2B site (business to business), but it is a good idea to spend just a couple of hours to create, add the types of products you carry, upload pictures, add links to your website and/or social media profiles like Pinterest and Facebook. This could help you get found in Linked In search results, or on other search engines like Google.